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The Last Word
Random thoughts... and post-election comments

Here at the world headquarters of the Business Journal, we have a somewhat obscure, extremely part-time, but always on the lookout for bizarre stuff, working group we refer to as the “Truth is Stranger Than Fiction, Because Fiction Has to Make Sense” (TSTFBFHMS) department. From the bowels of their dusty, dimly lit, barely functional cubicle, comes this…

In 2012, both Groundhog Day and the State of the Union address will occur on the same day. Think about what an ironic juxtaposition of events this is. One involves a meaningless ritual in which we look to an insignificant creature of little intelligence for prognostication.

The other involves a groundhog.


Another murky, and even more part-time corner of our HQ houses the “Out of the Mouths of Children” Department, which for the most part consists of executive oversight by my 8-year old grandson — aka The Bryceman. The other day, as he was perusing the toy section of one of our local department stores, and began closely examining several items he was considering investing his allowance in, he asked a very astute, and telling, question… papa, is everything made in China?”


I saw where because of the fact Americans as a group have become much more obese over the last decade, the Washington State Ferry System (WSF) has reduced the number of passengers it will allow on board its vessels. This of course reduces revenues and contributes to fare increases, but that’s another subject for another time.

A strong argument can be made that WSF has contributed to its own problem with the kinds of fare served in the on-board, less than semi-gourmet dining establishments — chicken strips, donuts, burgers, etc.

In a pro-active move to keep the problem from getting even worse, at least WSF serves light beer on board.


From the “Government has Finally Come to its Senses” Department, comes the news that the Feds have relented and will allow us to continue using Thomas Edison’s most famous invention, the incandescent light bulb.

Apparently, most people were in the dark about how close America came to the incandescent bulb never again being allowed to see — or provide — the light of day in America.

It seems big government has lots of folks who seem to think they know what’s best for all of us, and have absolutely nothing better to do than engage in meddling mischief. For inexplicable reasons, they decided to use the power of government to force Americans to use only those weird-looking florescent bulbs — the ones made only in China, laden with toxic mercury, and required to be disposed of as hazardous waste — and to make it a crime to use Edison’s good old fashion incandescents.

Believe it or not, the person responsible for driving the movement to reverse that nonsensical mandate was none other than Phyllis Schlafly. Remember her? Back in the 70’s she was seemingly the lone, anti-feminist crusader against the Equal Rights Amendment for women. Glad to see her doing something more productive with her time, that benefits the greater good.


Finally, I’ve had lots of questions about my five-vote loss in the Port Orchard Mayoral election. First and foremost, I’d like to express a heartfelt “Thank You” to the voters who supported me, as well as the outstanding staff at City Hall. I’m truly grateful for your belief in me, and my vision for our City.

The Port Orchard Independent documented in depth what was a sleazy, highly dishonest, but well-orchestrated smear campaign against me. Editor Tim Kelly publicly chastised the group responsible — People for a Better Port Orchard — but by then, most of the damage was already done. However, I sincerely appreciate Tim setting the record straight about the actual facts.

The people who financed the smear campaign are Port Orchard City Councilman Fred Chang, Cedar Cove Inn owner Gil Michael, Port Orchard Chamber Executive Coreen Johnson’s boyfriend, Steve Sego, as well as her daughter Rebeka — the sleaze campaign’s treasurer — and her son Joshua. Also donating were Military Air Cargo owner John Yamamura, along with County Assessor Jim Avery’s wife Sue, South Kitsap School Board member Patty Henderson, Cappricio Catering owner Desiree Steffens, Pam Piper, and Morningside Bakery. CPA Dawn Jake paid for mailing one of those sleazy hit pieces, and her husband, who owns Bethel Towing, also contributed to the group. All the materials were printed by Fine Arts Litho.

I’ve decided to keep my personal opinions on the outcome, the new Mayor, and the City’s future, to myself. Publicizing them serves no useful purpose.

This was perhaps the most venomous, divisive election in the City’s history. As we go to press in late December, I still receive phone calls and emails from angry supporters demanding revenge for the loss. While, five votes is certainly no mandate for change, it’s time to close the book on this election so Port Orchard can begin the healing process, and move forward once again.

Although the majority of the City’s business community supported me, there are continuing efforts to discredit particular downtown businesses that were highly visible champions of my re-election. It’s time for the new Mayor to rein in his supporters responsible for that, actively reach out to a business community that didn’t support him, and find common ground. It’s also up to the business community to act with integrity by honestly seeking common ground with the new administration as well. Whether they like it or not, they need each other.

Port Orchard is well positioned for the future in terms of economic stability, low crime, and a great staff with a can-do attitude. With effective, pro-active leadership, healing the wounds inflicted by this election will allow Port Orchard become the great City it has all the potential to be. But it’s up to both sides to allow that healing to begin, and for the new Mayor to lead the effort. I strongly support and encourage that. I hope everyone else — on both sides — will as well. Port Orchard deserves nothing less.

Lary Coppola's picture
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